Swimming bacteria: from individual swimmers to dense suspensions

Condensed Matter lunchtime seminar

Swimming bacteria: from individual swimmers to dense suspensions

  • Event time: 1:00pm
  • Event date: 27th September 2010
  • Speaker: (School of Physics & Astronomy, University of Edinburgh)
  • Location: Room 2511,

Event details

B. subtilis is often used to investigate collective swimming behaviour in concentrated bacterial suspensions despite the fact that little is known about swimming of individual cells. It is assumed to be similar to the paradigm peritrichous microorganism E. coli which generates thrust with a single propulsive flagella bundle. Using live cell flagella imaging, we directly visualise and compare the swimming mechanism between these two species. We also present direct visualisation of flagella filaments during reversal events which have been highlighted as a possible mechanism to facilitate collective swimming amongst larger number of interacting cells. And imaging of flagella filaments in the setting of collective swimming behaviour reveals how the run and tumble behaviour of cells varies as a function of concentration.

This is a weekly series of informal talks given primarily by members of the soft condensed matter and statistical mechanics groups, but is also open to members of other groups and external visitors. The aim of the series is to promote discussion and learning of various topics at a level suitable to the broad background of the group. Everyone is welcome to attend..

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